Hotels in Hua Hin and Cha-Am aiming to Reach for the Stars The Thai Hotel Association and the Tourism Authorities of Thailand (TAT) are launching a project to standardize hotels, resorts and guesthouses in Hua Hin and Cha-Am to assure quality and services of these businesses for tourists. According to the Chairman of the Thai Hotel Association in Bangkok, Mr. Sampan Paenpat, the Association hosted a meeting for Hotels and Guesthouses owners of Hua Hin and Cha-Am in collaboration with the TAT and the Hotel Association of Western Thailand. The main discussion of the meeting concerns issuance of official certificates to ‘standardize residences for tourism’ known commonly as ‘hotel stars’. To earn a star-ranking, hotel owners should make an application to the Association. Then, qualified committee members appointed by the Association will do on-site monitoring and check whether the hotel which applied meets the requirement established. Finally, stars will be given to the hotel according to its status: from 1 to 5 stars; that is, from low to superior status. The main objective of the star ranking is to assure quality of hotel services, enable hotels to improve their facilities to meet standards set up by the Association, improve quality of tourist areas throughout Thailand and boost tourism industry in the country amidst competition with neighboring countries. Mr. Sampan added that the Association mobilized the project all over Thailand. So far, 210 hotels have earned stars which serve as an indicator on services provided to Thais and foreigners. Previously, some hotels rated themselves and used the ‘false’ stars to convince tourists — the faux pas on doing hotel business as stars must be rated by authorized officials. Moreover, many factors, such as the accommodation itself, the service and the safety among others, will be used in consideration of rating a hotel. Unless requirements are successfully met, hotels will not receive stars and customers can file lawsuit against them. Hotels, resorts and guesthouses in Hua Hin and Cha-Am that have been authorized already can upgrade themselves by apply for star rating by the Thai Hotel Association or the TAT throughout this year. More information can be obtained at tel. 02 281 9496.